Michael Luick-Thrams, executive director of Traces Center for History and Culture in Mason City, speaks Nov. 7 at Central College about Europe’s refugee crisis and Iowa’s connections to the Holocaust. His noon and 7 p.m. sessions are open to the public.
Did you know that Iowa farmers and college students provided a safe haven to Jewish, political and intellectual refugees during World War II? Or that Anne Frank exchanged letters with a pen pal in Danville, Iowa? And that 20,000 German prisoners of war were held on the Iowa prairie? Students and guests will learn about these and other forgotten stories of Iowans’ response to the Holocaust during Luick-Thram’s 7 p.m. presentation, “Schindler’s List on the Prairie: Iowans’ Response to the Holocaust as it Unfolded,” in Maytag Student Center’s Moore/Weller Rooms.
At noon, Luick-Thrams will present “A Continent Divided: Europe and Its Refugee Crisis” in Central Market’s President’s Dining Room.
Luick-Thrams, born on an Iowa farm, now splits his time between Iowa and Germany. He began recording Americans’ experiences in Nazi Germany in 1989, then completed doctoral studies in Berlin in 1997. Luick-Thrams has completed many speaking tours across the U.S. and is author of “Out of Hitler’s Reach,” a book about Iowa’s Scattergood Hostel, where refugees from Nazi-occupied Europe found a new life.
Events are sponsored by student development, Intercultural Educators and the departments of modern languages and history.